Developing reflective practices for the day care centres in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area’

Mikko Ojala, Tuulikki Venninen

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    Developing reflective practices for the day care centres in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area

    This paper examines the manifestations of reflection in the Finnish day-care staff of 21 day-care centres, using data collected during a development process of 18 months. The level of reflective work was investigated with surveys and interviews. The results show that interviews provide a better possibility of examining reflection. The survey data collected by means of a paper questionnaire were limited to brief and superficial replies, the reasoning behind which was often difficult to discern. The results also show that most daycare employees were on the two lowest levels. The descriptions given in interviews were mostly located on the second and third levels of reflection, but the fourth level, showing critical reflection, was also reached during the interviews. The survey responses, on the other hand, were mostly located on the two lowest levels; in practice, the fourth level was hardly reached at all. Our research shows that the professional behaviour of day-care staff can be modelled and supervised using reflective practices theory. The approach offers a challenging and dynamic method of developing new practices together with others, but in a way that also allows an individual approach to one´s work. Reflection skills are adopted gradually, and people reach various levels of individual reflection.

    Keywords: word; reflection, reflective practice, levels of reflection, early year education, professional development
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalReflective Practice
    Issue number3
    Pages (from-to)335-346
    Number of pages12
    Publication statusPublished - May 2011
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Fields of Science

    • 516 Educational sciences

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